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When it comes to the workplace, employee productivity and well-being are some of the most important things to consider. While much of the conversation around facility management centres around reducing real estate costs, this can only go so far before it starts to hinder employees.
That being said, there are a number of easy improvements you can make to boost employee productivity in the workplace. In this article, we will review the most effective ways to reduce or eliminate poor working conditions.
1. Space utilization
Optimizing the office so that the space is used as best as possible is the first element to consider when trying to assess the quality of the working conditions. For employees to perform their duties, they must have access to the right space and resources. Optimizing the office goes beyond simply allocating a certain amount of space per person; employees require sufficient space to work comfortably, as well as an appropriate balance of different types of space where they can be productive. They must have access to both quiet locations where they can focus on deep work and shared areas where they can collaborate. In addition to the physical space requirements, workers should have easy access to tools that allow them to locate and reserve these places.
2. Dated technology
Workplace technology is another crucial element influencing employee experience. Slow and outdated technology that is ineffective can be extremely frustrating for everyone involved and over time can even result in pushing valuable employees to resign.
Additionally to hurting productivity, not using adequate technology can cost an organization much time and money. Updating the office technology could save upwards of $1.6 million of your annual budget according to an article from Facility Management Journal.
3. Poor lighting
If there’s one thing employees want in their workplace design more than anything else, it’s access to natural light. Eye strain, weariness, and productivity are all exacerbated by poor lighting. On the contrary, having plenty of light, particularly natural light, can boost productivity.
A Future Workplace survey found that 70% of employees asserted that having access to natural light makes them more productive yet over 33% of people said that they did not feel to have adequate access to natural light.
4. Workplace processes
Workplace processes are another crucial element to consider when thinking about working conditions. It’s important that you take a look at the existing processes in place and identify opportunities for improvement.
It is easy to fall into the routine of current processes and procedures without pausing to ask yourself whether or not they are efficiently helping staff get their job done. Opening a dialogue with your team can help bridge that gap. Talking about workflow processes with your employees will allow you to identify issues that are slowing down the chain or areas of weakness. Sometimes, all you need to do is tweak a few minor details to drastically improve workplace productivity.
It is no surprise that the demand for a better work-life balance is on the rise. Results from Gallup’s most recent survey found that 53% of employees answered that work-life balance was “very important” to them. The same survey also found that 51% of employees would change jobs for better flexible schedules at work.
When possible, offer flexible options to help employees achieve a better work/life balance. It’s also critical to ensure that workloads are manageable and to encourage employees to take advantage of their paid vacation time.
A well-rested worker improves both the quality and amount of work produced.
Comfort is yet another point to consider for better working conditions. Being productive in an environment that is too hot or too cold can be difficult. Similarly, faulty desks, chairs, and other office equipment can significantly slow down productivity and create distractions. Over time, this can prevent staff from engaging in deep work and producing the best results which can cause a significant negative impact on employee experience and morale.
As it is with workplace processes, opening a dialogue with your team is the best way to address existing issues and ensure that employees are feeling comfortable and well supported in the office.
7. Corporate culture
Lastly, the company culture of an organization also influences the quality of employee engagement and productivity and is yet another emerging reason for workers to want to leave for a different job.
A negative organizational culture, like a bad attitude, is contagious. Employee engagement and productivity suffer as a result.
But there’s more to building a strong company culture than offering amazing incentives and holding a happy hour every now and then. It all starts with your executive team developing strong core principles and reinforcing them throughout your company.
A decline in productivity and staff engagement, as well as a higher-than-normal churn rate in an organization, could be caused by one or more of these poor working conditions.
Talk to your leadership team and staff about the main productivity hurdles they’re facing. You may begin to solve the problem after you have a better understanding of it. Here are a few things you can do to improve your workplace and boost staff productivity:
- Lead with data: Use space management tools to figure out how staff are using the areas they have and how you can make them more efficient.
- Introduce new technology to the workplace: look for solutions that interact with your current platforms. Get feedback from employees to make sure it’s going to help them be more productive rather than just adding extra steps.
- Allow employees as much flexibility as possible: in terms of where, when, and how they work. Having a policy in place for remote work might be beneficial.
- Provide employees with the resources they need to be productive: This includes the capacity to locate people, make reservations, make service requests, and receive mail or guests.